Blogging challenge has started

Deciding Which Door to Choose 2
Photo Credit: Vic via Compfight

For the rest of the year, all your activities will relate to the student blogging challenge.

Some questions to answer first:

  1. Have you registered yet? Check out the student participants here. Go to your age group and see if your name and blog URL are included. If yes, go to next question.
  2. Have you added the challenge badge to your blog? If no, follow these instructions on this post
  3. Have you had a comment yet from your mentor? Find the mentor’s name at the top of your student group (they will be same colour as you) If yes, make sure you reply to their comment.

Activities to go on with

The challenge is all about you trying different things, reading instructions, helping each other and improving your blogging experience.

Week 1 is about introducing yourself.

  • Make sure you check out some of the student About Me pages mentioned in this post. If you want to add to your About Me page, ask me to change it back to draft so you can improve it.
  • It was also about creating avatars. Most of you have added your user avatar, but you can also add a blog avatar. It can be the same avatar and to upload it, go to your dashboard> settings> blog avatar.
  • Also have a look at activities 5, 7 and 9  You might be interested in trying one of these.

Week 2 is about commenting

  • If you haven’t seen Mrs Yollis’ video about commenting, then spend some time now watching it. It is at the bottom of the commenting post.
  • Visit Mrs Yollis’ post about commenting. She also shows some interesting HTML code you could be using in your comments.
  • You might want to have a go at one of the activities about commenting. They all sound great and one includes how to add to your blogroll and another is adding a widget like a flag counter.

Week 3 is about town and country

  • lots of activities relating to our country Australia
  • where would you prefer to live – town or city – why?
  • Number 13 challenge is about haunted houses or ghost stories

Week 4 is about your digital footprint and Blog Action Day (inequality)

  • Visit Mr Bogush’s website to read the activities
  • write post about inequality
  • number 13 is add 13 new links to blogroll ready for a game in a couple of weeks time

Week 5 is about using images and videos

  • lots of choices relating to images in your blog
  • have a go at some of them
  • remember to use compfight and give the attribution

Week 6 is about re-designing your blog

  • Choose a celebration like Halloween, Christmas, ANZAC Day etc
  • Change things on your blog to reflect this celebration
  • Remember some widgets will be made inactive if you change themes especially if changing number of sidebars

Week 7 is about schooling

  • Perhaps you could create a poll to put in your blog – here is post I wrote explaining how – step 4 change from visual editor to text editor
  • Lots of choices so make sure you check out the post

Week 8 is visiting blogs and nominating

  • Visit lots of other blogs, add them to your blogroll
  • Play the count out three game
  • Nominate a great blog for the Edublog Awards

Week 9 is about showing off what you have learnt about blogging

  • Write a post related to a global issue you would like to help solve
  • Your post will be added to a flipboard magazine if you have covered the criteria needed

Each week I will add on to this post about the activities you might want to have a go at from the challenge blog.

Remember to ask for help by leaving a comment here

PS If leaving a comment try to use some HTML code as shown in Mrs Yollis’ post.

Catch up time

Photo Credit: Marina del Castell via Compfight

I noticed on the weekend, there were lots of odds and ends students needed to finish on the work finished page. Look in header to find this.

So today will be a time for catching up.

I will give links to posts that give you instructions to complete certain things. As you get a couple of things completed, leave me a quality comment on this post. If some things are already marked off on the chart, no need to mention them in your comment. Just the new things you have completed. Here is an example:

Hi Miss W or Sue,

I have signed up for the blogging challenge. Looks like it might be lots of fun. I have also finished my comic about students rights.

Order to complete things:

  1. Register for student blogging challenge here
  2. Add student blogging badge to your widget sidebar
  3. Make sure your profile includes a link to your blog in the area labelled website – Also nickname and display name should be same as first name. Save or update.
  4. On your settings> general , make sure your time zone is correct; look for Hobart under Australia in the drop down menu. Save or update.
  5. Make sure you have the compfight plugin activated and settings correct.
  6. In your widgets, drag the class blogs across and in drop down menu, change number from 10 to 30. Save.
  7. Finish your comic post about student’s rights.
  8. Visit three other students in the blogging challenge and leave quality comments on their blogs. Now write a post telling me who you visited and what you left as a comment. Why did you leave a comment on that particular post?

Finished all these?

Write a post of your own choice about something you are really interested in. Assume your readers know nothing about your topic, explain things well and add an image using the compfight button on your post icons.

Children’s rights

Smile of the Adversity
Photo Credit: Dhilung Kirat via Compfight

Miss W has been following a twitter chat all about children’s rights. She found this photostory which you need to watch. Think about which rights you have at home and/or at school. Then think about those children in Syria, Gaza or Afghanistan. What rights do they have? Is there anything you can do to help them?

Your task this week is to create a three frame comic strip about children’s rights. Here is the link to a post I have written about making comic strips. Spend today’s lesson playing with the website and creating your three frames. Use the snipping tool or printscreen button to save each frame as you finish it. Save to your drive at school remembering to give each frame a different name eg johncom1 and johncom2 and johncom3.

Next week we will crop, resize your comic frames and add to a post about children’s rights. So make sure you have those three frames saved ready for next week’s lesson.

All about me

Calf cuteness attack
Creative Commons License Photo Credit: Marji Beach via Compfight


My name is Mrs Cole and I am helping the students at my local primary school every Monday until the end of the year.  Sometimes I will be helping in this classroom and will post a blog when I can.

I live on a farm that has 114 acres.  We have cows that we keep until they are two years old as well as sharing some of our land with the dairy farmer who is our neighbour.  He milks the cows and the milk goes to Cadburys.

What do you think Cadburys would make with the milk?


Welcome to our first course for 2014

G’day Kailee, Logan, Angus, Jake, Shakiya, Kirstyn, Ebony, Jack, Mathew, Tom and Cody,

Our first lesson is to find out how the online classroom works.

It is like being in a classroom normally, where you are expected to put up your hand when you have a question or else you can write it in the chat area. In the online classroom, I will often put a timer on so you know how much time you have to complete a certain task.

Here are the icons used in the online classroom.

  1. Online iconsIn this first row, clicking on the drop down arrow at the smiley face gives you more icons including clapping hands. The second icon on this row is clicked if you have to leave the room for some reason, the third icon is putting up your hand if you have a question and want to use the microphone, the fourth icon is if I take a poll in class.
  2. When you are allowed to talk, you need to have your hand up then press the talk button. When you have finished talking press the talk button to turn it off and then turn off the hand as well by clicking it again.
  3. This third row shows what you are allowed to do in the class – microphone, video, chat area, write on whiteboard, share your computer screen, take a web tour. These last two you probably won’t use at all.

Whiteboard iconsThese are the icons when using the whiteboard.

Play on the whiteboard for five minutes to find out what you can do with each icon. Which icon allows:

  • clipart to use on screen – add a cup of coffee or globe or smiley face
  • writing on the screen – write your name in a colour not black and size 18
  • draw a thick line in a different colour
  • take a picture of something on your computer desktop
  • use a star or pointer on the screen

There are 12 activities to be completed by end of Easter which begins 18th April.

Check the work finished page each week to see what else you need to complete. Posts showing you what to do can be found in the Getting Started page in the header.

  1. Be able to login quickly to your own blog and class blog if you have one.
  2. Update your profile including change your password and the display name.
  3. Settings – blog title, tagline, timezone, add teacher as administrator
  4. Plugin – activate compfight plugin and change settings for short side
  5. About me page for your visitors to read – remember no personal information
  6. Left two comments on the main student bloggers blog
  7. Changed your theme
  8. Written at least two posts
  9. Edublogs widgets organized on your sidebar
  10. Make at least 3 comments on other student blogs from this online class
  11. Added your clustrmap, a clock and a pet widget
  12. Create and upload your avatar

Good luck with your blogging and remember the online classroom will be open every Monday from 1.30 until 4.30 so you can also use it at home if you have any questions. You can also email me any time any day of the week.

Leave a comment on this post describing your first experience in the online classroom.

First time blogging

bridging knowledge to health
Photo Credit: paul bica via Compfight

Today I spent time at a school on the North West coast of Tasmania (with a fabulous view), teaching a new group of students how to create their blogs. They looked at the student bloggers blog and the how to get started section.

They learnt to login, change their profile, add the compfight plugin, change themes and write a new post. In the next few minutes they will also add an image from compfight.

After lunch, I headed to another school where five more students will be taking part in the student blogging course. They had blogged last year with their principal so they already knew a bit about blogging. Hopefully they will catch up the activities completed at the first school so both groups are ready for our first formal online classroom on March 17th.

Leave a comment on this post explaining what you have enjoyed most about blogging so far. Remember to address your comment to Sue, be polite, check your spelling and punctuation before submitting the comment.

Our new magazine

Flipboard on the Go
Creative Commons License Photo Credit: Jorge Quinteros via Compfight

You might have noticed a link to a magazine on the sidebar. This is using an app called Flipboard. You can view the magazine on either a PC, iPad, Kindle, Nook or tablet device.

At the moment I am the only person who can flip articles to our magazine, but whenever a student from Tasmania writes a great post, I will be flipping it to the magazine. I can flip from any website on the web not just blogposts.

So far, there are posts from students in my blogging online class as well as students from Triabunna and Bicheno.

To read the magazine click on the sidebar image, this will open in a new tab. Flip through the magazine by using the arrows on the side. If there is a post that you want to visit and comment on, click on the name of the blogpost. This will then open to the actual blog.

You can also subscribe to the magazine.

How do you think classes could use a flipboard magazine for students, teachers and parents?

Activity 7 – Avatars

All students taking part in this course should already have created an avatar when you became part of your class blog. But here is a chance for you to create one of your own choosing rather than the type set by your teacher.

I have included below some avatar creation sites suitable for students in primary school. Just click on the image and it will take you to the website.




doppelme avatar 

Step 1. Create your avatar

Step 2. Using printscreen or snipping tool to save your avatar – make sure it is saved as a JPEG file

So you decided to create an avatar like “Hero Factory” or “Build your wildself” or “Mini Mizer” where you can’t download it easily. You need to take a picture of the screen first. Most computers have a printscreen button on the keyboard or if using Windows 7 you have an icon called “snipping tool”.

When you press printscreen an image of your screen is now copied to your clipboard. If using snipping tool, try to get only the part of the avatar you want to use. You will still need to crop and resize to get an avatar that fits well on your blog.

Here is a video showing how to find and use the snipping tool. When saving, make sure it is JPEG.

Go to your drive where you saved your avatar, right click on the icon for your avatar image and choose “Open with” choose Microsoft Office Picture Manager.

In the icons at the top, go to View> task pane.  On the right go to edit pictures > crop.  Now move the black bars on the side of your image in, to crop your picture to what you want in your avatar.

Click OK, then back to edit pictures. Now click on resize. In the box “custom width and height” put  97 in both boxes. These numbers might be slightly different but one has to be 97 and the other smaller than 97. Click OK.

Back up to file>save as> call it sueava2 or similar> make sure it is still JPEG. Make sure you have saved it to your drive again.

Step 3. Upload avatar to your  blog

Now to upload to your blog.  Go to your dashboard> users>your avatar> browse to find your image wherever you saved it>alternate upload.  This is your comment avatar.

If you want your avatar to appear on your sidebar like mine does – Dashboard>appearance>widget> blog avatar drag to your sidebar.  To upload the avatar, dashboard>settings>blog avatar> browse to find your image>alternate upload. Go to your blog page and refresh. Your blog avatar should appear on your blog now.

If it  looks like a black coloured square then you haven’t cropped the image to the correct size in step 2 . Or maybe you didn’t save the image as a JPEG in step 2 .

 Having fun with avatars

Why not create an avatar for each member of your family? Save each avatar then you will be able to write a post including each avatar when you tell your readers about your family members and their interests.

Want to create an avatar using Publisher? Read Mrs Smith’s post about how her class did this activity. PS Make sure you read  Mrs Smith’s comment linked here before using Publisher to create avatars.

Welcome to this blog

3 SeasonsAre you ready to start your blogging journey?

This blog is a 10 week course for students learning to blog. You may have done some work with other teachers, but this is all about setting up your own blog, step by step.

There are three ways to use this blog.

  1. Go to the archives, choose the earliest month and work your way through each post.
  2. Check the “Getting Started” page in the header. The ten weeks will be linked there in order of completion.
  3. Go to the recent posts widget on the sidebar and find each week’s post.

To have your own personal blog, you need to do the following:

  • Make sure your teacher or parent sends me an email saying they are willing to be an administrator of your blog as well as yourself.
  • Fill in the form in the header – Get my own blog
  • I will create the blog once I get the email from teacher/parent. My email address is a widget on the sidebar.


Photo Credit: Joel Bedford via Compfight